Rail Budget 2013 Reaction: Political parties say common man will be hit hard

Feb 26 2013, 19:04 IST
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SummaryPolitical parties today slammed Indian Railways Minister P K Bansal for increasing the burden on the common man.

of Railways," the Forward Bloc said.

Terming the railway budget as a "major disappointment," Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said the hike in supplementary and freight charges would cause an increase in the prices of essential commodities and fuel inflation.

The budget was "uninspiring" and lacked any long-term perspective with regard to infrastructure development, she said in a statement in Chennai.

"I have never seen such an anti-people budget in my political life.... This is a budget for Congress...you can give new trains for Rae Bareli (Lok Sabha constituency of Congress chief Sonia Gandhi), but don't ignore Bundelkhand and Poorvanchal," Mulayam said.

BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain alleged that the Rail budget had catered only to the Congress constituencies and it will give rise to inflation.

"I think is an ordinary budget. It lacks vision for the future," he said. "With the establishment of a National Tariff Commission the government has prepared an instrument to increase prices whenever the price of diesel or power is increased," he said.

Sinha claimed as unprecedented that members troop into the Well of the House during a Railway Budget presentation as was seen today.

"If the PM is strong, a good budget will be presented, if he is weak then, you can't blame the alliance. In every rail budget, regional aspirations are visible. If an MP is not satisfied with the Budget due to lack of announcement for his region, then there is ruckus in the House which we saw today," he said.

"I think, the situation witnessed today in the House was worse than any other rail budget, because slogans were being raised that this is not a rail budget but a Rae-Bareli budget. You take the name of a place three to four times and do not take the names of big states at all, then anger is apparent. This is a sycophancy budget," Sinha said.

Party spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said they did not expect that a Railway Minister belonging to a national party "will have such a narrow vision".

Referring to the Rs 24,600 crore loss announced by the government today, Mayawati said if Railways are run properly it would not incur any loss.

"Government says it will review the fares twice a year. A review only means an increase in fares. The government will never decrease fares. This will affect the poor and the middle class. It will also affect prices of commodities as they are transported on rail," she said.


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